23rd Mar 2012 | Tennis
The Sony Ericsson Open - also known as the Miami Masters - begins in earnest on Friday when the top male seeds enter the competition at the second round phase. The standout choice to go all the way is Roger Federer; the 16-time Grand Slam champion is a best price of 16/5 (Boylesports) to claim a record-breaking 20th Masters title.
Federer is still being undervalued by the bookmakers simply because he is the ‘wrong side’ of 30 and hasn’t won a major recently. We shouldn’t worry about any of this when the Swiss star is on a run of 39 wins in 41 matches since the US Open. He is the hottest player on the planet over the past six months and his success at Indian Wells last Sunday made it 15 victories on the bounce.
The odds are generous largely because of the automatic favouritism afforded to Novak Djokovic (2/1 Betfred). But the world number one is not at his imperious best right now after consecutive semi-final defeats to John Isner and Andy Murray.
The British number one may have claimed a notable scalp when beating the Serbian in Dubai, but he went on to lose to Federer in the final on that occasion. Murray is 8/1 (Boylesports) for glory in Miami but he’s expected to find it tough from the outset against Alejandro Falla on Friday. This hasn’t been a happy hunting ground for the Scot in recent times after first round exits in 2010 and 2011.
Federer also beat Rafael Nadal (7/2 WilliamHill) in the semi-finals at Indian Wells, so none of the other members of the ‘Big Four” should hold any fears at the current time. At 16/5 (Boylesports) the six-time Wimbledon champion looks outstanding value.